Are Women Willing to Try Cannabinoid Beauty Products?

Using cannabinoids to improve the health of your skin is all the rage. In 2019, Grandview Research¹ valued the CBD skincare market at $698 million with an expectation that it will grow at a rate of more than 27% year over year until 2025. The previous year, fellow market researcher The Benchmarking Company (TBC) performed a comprehensive analysis of how many women would be willing to try CBD skin care and the types of products they prefer. Learn the results of this analysis and what they entail for the future of the cannabinoid beauty product industry.

What are cannabinoid-infused beauty products?

Simply put, cannabinoid-infused beauty products are beauty products that have been infused with non-intoxicating hemp cannabinoids. The most common cannabinoids used in beauty products are CBD, CBG, and CBN, and cannabinoids can be added to a wide variety of different types of beauty and skincare products.

What are the benefits of cannabinoid-infused beauty products?

Cannabinoids like CBD have been researched for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidative effects². Most substances in hemp appear to have at least some antioxidant potential, and reducing oxidative stress is one of the main ways that beauty products improve the appearance of skin and prevent it from aging.

How many women are aware of cannabinoid-infused beauty products?

According to TBC’s report, 64% of women were already aware of the existence of cannabinoid-infused beauty products in 2018. Given the fact that CBD has been a national phenomenon for less than a decade, it’s impressive that the majority of women are already familiar with cannabinoid beauty products.

How many women would be willing to try cannabinoid beauty products?

Out of the women who have not yet tried cannabinoid-infused beauty products, 72% indicated that they would be willing to give them a shot. Let’s break down the willingness of women to try cannabinoid beauty products by generation:

Percentage of Gen Z women willing to try cannabinoid beauty products

Women in Generation Z are just now starting to reach adulthood, and they’re starting to make purchasing decisions. The TBC report indicates that, as of 2018, 68% of Gen Z women were already willing to consider trying cannabinoid-infused beauty products.

Percentage of Millennial women willing to try cannabinoid beauty products

Composed entirely of adults with at least some peripheral awareness of cannabinoids, Millennial women polled at 74% likely to try cannabinoid-infused beauty products. Since Millennials are younger, though, they’re not yet as preoccupied with skin aging.

Percentage of Gen X women willing to try cannabinoid beauty products

Gen X women have witnessed every stage in the saga of modern hemp, and as of 2018, they were 77% likely to give cannabinoid beauty products a shot. Now that Gen X women are making up a considerable component of the middle-aged demographic, they’re becoming increasingly focused on preventative skin aging products.

Percentage of Boomer women willing to try cannabinoid beauty products

Women of the Baby Boom generation still clearly remember when “cannabinoid” was a buzzword associated with illegal drugs. At 60%, they’re still not quite as ready as other age groups to try cannabinoid-infused beauty products. 

How many young women have already tried cannabinoid beauty products?

Keep in mind that the above statistics pertain only to women who had not already tried cannabinoid beauty products. The Benchmarking Company found that 72% of women between the ages of 18 and 38 had already tried cannabinoid beauty products in 2018, indicating that cannabinoid-infused beauty products are remarkably widespread.

Where do women buy cannabinoid beauty products?

Even though women everywhere are using cannabinoid beauty products in droves, they massively prefer certain sources of cannabinoid beauty products to others. According to the TBC report:

  • 38% of women who use cannabinoid beauty products buy them from specialty beauty stores
  • 34% buy cannabinoid beauty products via multi-brand online retailers like Amazon
  • 27% buy directly from brand websites
  • 21% buy from conventional consumer packaged goods stores like Walmart

Why do women prefer buying cannabinoid beauty products at specialty retailers?

Women want to make sure that the cannabinoid beauty products they buy are authentic and high-quality. Twenty-four percent of women who buy cannabinoid beauty products say that concerns over authenticity are why they don’t want to buy from a retailer like Amazon.

The subset of women who buy beauty products has often developed buying patterns with certain brands or have personal relationships with clerks at specialty stores. Instead of going through the process of vetting dozens of potential products online, they prefer to discover new cannabinoid beauty products from trusted sources.

Once they’re aware of the benefits a cannabinoid beauty product might offer, though, women aren’t afraid to buy directly from the brand’s website. Women who buy cannabinoid beauty products from major retailers like Walmart generally do so due to convenience and can be steered toward online products that better suit their needs.

How to design and market cannabinoid products for specialty beauty retailers

Wherever you intend to sell it, a cannabinoid beauty product should befit the shelves of an upscale beauty shop. These shops are where women learn about the products they want to buy, and they’ll trust a product that looks and feels upscale.

As long as it’s justified by the ingredients you use, it’s reasonable to charge a premium for cannabinoid beauty products. Women understand that cannabinoids are expensive, and they’re willing to spend considerable sums on preserving their appearance.

What are the top 5 types of cannabinoid beauty products?

Women are most interested in cannabinoid beauty products they can use to improve the overall health and youthfulness of their skin. They also find themselves in need of certain specialized products like hand creams, lip balms, and even more conventional types of hemp products. Let’s take a look at the five most popular cannabinoid beauty product types The Benchmarking Company identified in its 2018 report:

1. Body lotion

Body lotion and other all-body skincare products are the most popular types of cannabinoid beauty products available. Women who use these products generally believe that they improve or preserve the youthfulness of the skin on their arms, neck, thighs, or posterior, and they commonly apply cannabinoid skin creams as general body lotions.

2. Hand cream

Cannabinoid-infused creams designed to be applied only to your hands are also quite popular. Researchers have looked into the potential ability of cannabinoids to improve hydration³, which is a common reason women apply creams to their hands. 

3. Lip balm

Hydration is also the main purpose of lip balms, and it’s convenient that cannabinoid-rich hemp extracts are oil-based just like lip balm bases. Women generally use cannabinoid-infused lip balms to improve their lip hydration or prevent aging oxidative stress.

4. Bath products

According to the TBC report, women commonly buy bath products that have been infused with cannabinoids. CBD bath bombs are one popular example, and there are also CBD bath salts and CBD bubble bath products to choose from.

5. Oils

Some women use plain-old CBD oils on their skin. Certain CBD oils are specifically formulated with skincare in mind, but it’s also reasonably common for women to use CBD tinctures intended for oral ingestion on their skin instead.

Why do women use cannabinoid beauty products?

According to the TBC report, the primary reason women use cannabinoid beauty products is because they believe hemp is a substance that is good for you. The report also indicates that Gen Z women, the youngest women using cannabinoid beauty products, are highly driven by positive customer reviews as they sift through available cannabinoid beauty products. Overall, TBC found that women generally believe cannabis has medicinal value, so they have no problem using it in skincare products that offer no potential of intoxication.

Which objections might you need to overcome?

To help hemp companies market their products to women, The Benchmarking Company investigated the most common objections women have to using cannabinoid beauty products as part of its 2018 report. Fifty-two percent of women are simply unaware of the potential benefits of using cannabinoid beauty products, and 30% are concerned about the topical safety of cannabinoids. A further 24% were simply content with the products they were already using, and 18% were concerned about potential intoxication.

Some of these objections are based on misconception, and the rest are based on lack of information. For women who simply don’t know what cannabinoids can do for their skin, education is the key. For women who are concerned about safety, certifications and lab reports are useful. Those who like their current routines can be led to understand the unique topical benefits of cannabinoids, and women concerned about intoxication can be assured that cannabinoids like CBD, CBG, and CBC are 100% intoxication-free.

Marketing cannabinoid beauty products to women: The bottom line

The cannabinoid beauty market is growing even faster than the overall cannabinoid market. Women everywhere are becoming aware of the potential topical benefits of cannabinoids, their needs are clear, and their objections are easy to overcome. With the benefits of cannabinoids even clearer than the needs of the women who use them, there has never been a better time to develop and market cannabinoid beauty products.


  1. Global CBD Skin Care Market Size Report, 2020–2025. (2019). Grandview Research.
  2. Atalay, S., Jarocka-Karpowicz, I., & Skrzydlewska, E. (2019). Antioxidative and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Cannabidiol. Antioxidants, 9(1), 21.
  3. Martins, A. M., Gomes, A. L., Vilas Boas, I., Marto, J., & Ribeiro, H. M. (2022). Cannabis-Based Products for the Treatment of Skin Inflammatory Diseases: A Timely Review. Pharmaceuticals, 15(2), 210.

Courtesy of GVB Biopharma.